If you’re a normal person, chances are when the dentist asks you if you’ve been flossing, your mouth turns up into an awkward, sheepish grin—awkward, because your mouth is full of dental tools; sheepish, because you’re terrible at flossing.
Whether you find flossing tedious or uncomfortable, whether you skip due to spite or forgetfulness, something in your attitude and habits needs to change. And while flossing can be really simple, there are also tools out there to help you jazz up your daily flossing.
The simplest of all your flossing alternatives are flossing sticks. These help you with the reach of your floss. Another plus: there is no need to wrap the floss around your fingers, therefore preventing that uncomfortable loss of circulation. As flossing sticks provide you with a smaller strip of floss, it also gives you more control and many find it easier to maneuver.
There are two options here: those that are disposable and individually packaged, and those that are reuseable. You can buy small packets of the disposable kind at any store, and they are good for one use. If you feel like that is too expensive or wasteful, try investing in a plastic reacher that allows you to create your own floss stick each time you need to floss.
If you’re more of a high tech person, try out an air flosser. Similar to an electric toothbrush, an air flosser is chargeable. You place the head at the base of your gums in between the teeth and, at the press of a button, the flosser will shoot air mixed with water and mouthwash in between your teeth.
While this is a cool idea, it might need to be used only as a flossing supplement, not a full substitute, as many dentists worry that it isn’t strong enough to replace flossing althogether.
Similar to an air flosser but more effective, a water flosser sends a strong and sharp stream of water between your teeth. It’s very effective and powerful—so much so that dentists warn users to not turn the pressure up to high or it could damage your gums. However, the water flosser is easy to maneuver, adjust, and customize, so that you can give your mouth the best flossing it’s had in years—even without the floss.